Special Issue "New Insights into Shiga Toxin: Mode of Action, Pathogenicity, Risks and Therapies"

A special issue of Toxins (ISSN 2072-6651). This special issue belongs to the section "Bacterial Toxins".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2023 | Viewed by 126

Special Issue Editor

Laboratory of Hygiene of Foods of Animal Origin, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Thessaly, 224 Trikalon Street, 43100 Karditsa, Greece
Interests: food pathogens; milk products; food microbiology; Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli; STEC; Staphylococcus aureus; staphylococcal enterotoxins; mycotoxins; aflatoxins; ochratoxins
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Shiga toxins are virulence factors produced by Shigella dysenteriae serotype 1 and several toxigenic strains of Escherichia coli (STEC). The majority of recorded Shiga toxins outbreaks have been caused by strains associated to E. coli serotype O157:H7. Two types of Shiga toxins are generally recognized: Shiga toxin 1 (Stx1) and Shiga toxin 2 (Stx2). Several subtypes of both Shiga toxin 1 and 2 are known to exist, and STEC may contain either one or a combination of subtypes. According to present nomenclature, Stx1 type consists of Stx1a, Stx1c, and Stx1d variants, while Stx2 type comprises Stx2a, Stx2b, Stx2c, Stx2d, Stx2e, Stx2f, and Stx2g variants. Shiga toxin pathogenesis is associated with hemorrhagic diarrhea, progressing to potentially severe health complications, such as hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) and central nervous system malfunctions. In most cases, the Stx2a and Stx2d subtypes are related to severe disease in humans. Shiga toxins target the cytoplasm by endocytosis and are transported through a backward pathway to the endoplasmic reticulum. According to several recent studies, Shiga toxins are associated with potent ribosome protein synthesis inhibitors or the activation of multiple cellular stresses, which may cause apoptosis, autophagy, or stimulation of the innate immune response. Shiga toxins consist of two major subunits: the A subunit and the pentameric B subunits. The function of the B subunits is to bind to the cellular receptor globotriaosylceramide (Gb3), located on the surface of endothelial cells. Since many types of cancer cells overexpress Gb3 on their surface, the binding of Stx B subunits coupled to anti-cancer agents has been examined for targeted cancer therapeutics. Advanced ‘omic’ technologies (genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics) have been used for the analysis of Shiga toxins, and the mode of action, pathogenicity, risks, and therapies of Shiga toxins require further investigation.

This Special Issue of Toxins, entitled “New Insights into Shiga Toxin: Mode of Action, Pathogenicity, Risks and Therapies,” welcomes original research articles or reviews on the current state of knowledge of this subject.

Prof. Dr. Alexander Govaris
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Toxins is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Shiga toxins
  • Shiga toxin1 (Stx1)
  • Shiga toxin 2 (Stx2)
  • Escherichia coli O157:H7
  • STEC
  • Shiga toxin and cancer

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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